Bridging the gap between the 'Big Four Banks' and everybody else, the St.George Amplify Signature Visa is your ticket to earning up to 0.825 Qantas, Virgin Australia, Singapore Airlines or Malaysia Airlines frequent flyer points per dollar spent – depending on which kind of card you choose – and with the backing of Westpac behind the scenes to keep things running smoothly.
You can select either the Amplify Signature Visa with Qantas Points where your points are automatically converted to Qantas Frequent Flyer every month, or the Amplify Signature Visa with Amplify Points to utilise the bank's Amplify Rewards program, from which points can be converted to the likes of Velocity, KrisFlyer and Enrich.
What's more, eligible new customers who apply for the Amplify Signature Visa with Qantas Points by May 22 2019 can also earn 80,000 bonus Qantas Points after spending $4,000 on purchases within 90 days of card approval – or, up to 200,000 bonus Amplify Points over two years (currently worth up to 100,000 Velocity points) when you apply for the Amplify Signature Visa with Amplify Points by the same date and spend $12,000 on eligible purchases each year for two years.
Both of these card options also include a reduced annual fee of $179 in the first year, a saving of $100 over the regular $279 charge. Naturally, that fee is payable from the second year onwards, including by Amplify Points customers in order to receive their full bonus points, if eligible.
St.George Amplify Signature card: fast facts
- Grade/tier: Black
- Card type: Visa Signature
- Loyalty variants: Qantas Points (Qantas Frequent Flyer) or Amplify Points (Amplify Rewards)
- Qantas Points earned per A$1 spent (Qantas Frequent Flyer): 0.75 (0.825 including a 10% 'birthday bonus')
- Or, Amplify Points earned per A$1 spent (Amplify Rewards): 1.5 (1.65 with 'birthday bonus')
- 1.65 Amplify Rewards points = 0.825 Velocity Points, 0.825 Singapore Airlines KrisFlyer miles or 0.825 Malaysia Airlines Enrich miles via 2:1 conversion
- Points capping/tiering: None
Amplify Signature: fees, charges and interest
- Annual fee: $279 (currently reduced to $179 in the first year)
- Additional/supplementary cardholder fee: $0
- Interest rate on purchases: 19.74% p.a.
- Interest-free days on purchases: Up to 55
- Interest rate on cash advances: 21.49% p.a.
- International transaction fee: 3.0%
- Minimum income requirement: No defined minimum
- Minimum credit limit: $15,000
Earning points for free flights: 3.5/5
St.George's Amplify Signature cards come with no points capping or tiering: so regardless of how much you spend each month or year, you'll keep earning the same number of points on every dollar charged to the card.
On both the Qantas Points and Amplify Points cards, there's also a nifty 10% 'birthday bonus' each year which looks at your spending for the past 12 months (or part-year for new applicants) and awards a boost of 10% more points as you celebrate your special day.
For Amplify Points customers converting their points to Virgin Australia Velocity, enough points could be earned to book a one-way Sydney-Melbourne flight in economy after spending $9,455, based on Velocity's current reward rates.
Via the Qantas route, you'd need to spend $9,697 to achieve the same, because although the card's frequent flyer earning rate per dollar spent remains the same for both airlines, Qantas commands slightly more points than Velocity to book flights on this route.
Airport lounge access: 2.5/5
Cardholders receive two free airport lounge visits each year, tailored to type of card they hold.
Members earning points via Qantas receive two complimentary Qantas Club passes after registering via the St.George website...
... which can be used in most domestic Qantas Clubs and Qantas-operated international business class lounges whenever travelling with Qantas or Jetstar, with the exception of the Qantas/Oneworld Business Lounge in Los Angeles, the Qantas Perth Transit Lounge and the Qantas Singapore Lounge.
Alternatively, Amplify Rewards cardholders can net a free Priority Pass membership with two lounge visits included, after which they can continue using their Priority Pass card to access participating lounges at a cost of US$32 per visit.
Free insurance coverage: 4.5/5
As with most above-Platinum credit cards international travel insurance comes as part of the parcel: activated on a per-trip basis by charging at least $500 worth of travel costs to the card before leaving Australia and when holding a return ticket for trips of six months or less.
Those travel costs can be your return airfare, airport/departure taxes, pre-paid hotel stays during the trip or pre-paid 'overseas itinerary items'.
Essentially, that gives you the flexibility to book your international flights using frequent flyer points rather than cash, provided you still charge >A$500 worth of eligible costs to the Amplify Signature card before jetting off.
Also thrown in is extended warranty cover, purchase and price guarantees on eligible purchases, interstate flight inconvenience insurance, transit accident insurance and rental vehicle excess insurance in Australia.
St.George Amplify Signature: how it compares
If frequent flyer points are your goal, the St.George Amplify Signature card is one of the few Visa/Mastercard products to remain uncapped and un-tiered following the RBA's cuts to credit card 'interchange fees', with an earn rate of up to 0.825 airline frequent flyer points wherever Visa is accepted for purchases.
While it's a shame that bonus points on international transactions are no longer offered, as was available in previous years, the earn rate within Australia remains competitive in the current climate.
What's more, with 80,000 Qantas Points or up to 200,000 Amplify Points up your sleeve simply by applying and meeting the spend criteria, you'll be well-placed to book your next business class flight using points.